1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Baby duck help needed

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Meili, Jun 1, 2016.

  1. Meili

    Meili New Egg

    2
    0
    7
    Jun 1, 2016
    Hi, I've just become the proud mommy to four orphaned ducklings. They are tiny and I'm sure they are brand new. I'm planning on keeping them alive long enough to release them at a nice duck pond. I raised baby chicks once but not ducklings. Can you guys direct me to some solid resources on raising these little guys? I've been feeding them ground up anchovies, mashed peas, and crushed granola. I'm not feeling confident that they are eating right. I've got a great lamp over them and a place to hide from the heat so I think they are okay in that regard. I've got a shallow water dish. If I can figure out how, I'll post a picture I took with them close to a quarter. They are not much bigger than the quarter.
     
  2. Pyxis

    Pyxis Dark Sider Premium Member

    10,092
    1,797
    368
    Mar 27, 2012
    Vermont
    My Coop
    :welcome! Your intentions were good in rescuing them, but you need to hand them over to a wildlife rehabber. Even if they are mallards or wood ducks, if you raise them and then turn them loose on a pond they will have no idea how to survive in the wild and will be easy prey for predators or will starve to death because they will not know how to find food. They may survive, but the chances are slim. A rehabber will be able to raise them in such a way that release to the wild is possible. If they're not mallards and are in fact a domestic breed (although that seems unlikely based on their size), releasing them is a guaranteed death sentence.

    It's also illegal for you to have them if they are a wild breed, and if caught you could face fines or even potentially jail time.

    Until you get them to a rehabber, you will need to feed them a duck starter feed that you can purchase at a feed store. If you can't find one for ducks, one for chicks will be okay. Make sure they have heat and can move away from it if they get too hot. Make sure they have water at all times because they can choke on their food if they do not. You will also want to give them grit because what you have been feeding them up until now will require grit for them to be able to properly digest.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. Meili

    Meili New Egg

    2
    0
    7
    Jun 1, 2016
    Thank you very much! You are the second person to recommend handing them to a wildlife rehabilitator. I'm in the process of looking up the ones in my area. Your other suggestions for their care in the meantime are quite helpful too. I appreciate it.
     
  4. Pyxis

    Pyxis Dark Sider Premium Member

    10,092
    1,797
    368
    Mar 27, 2012
    Vermont
    My Coop
    You're welcome! Good luck with the little guys :)
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by